Travelling alone in Amsterdam, whilst liberating, can be a little daunting to first-time solo travellers. But don’t let that deter you!
From museums and cheap eats to Europe’s biggest flea market and even a mini-spa(!) – take a look at our top 10 things to do alone in Amsterdam.
In a rush? Here’s a snapshot of our list…
- Go on a walking tour
- Visit the museums of Amsterdam
- Take a trip to IJ-Hallen
- Catch a film at Tushchinski
- Visit Brouwerij ‘t IJ
- Take a stroll around Vondelpark
- Visit one of Holland’s iconic tulip fields
- Where to eat alone in Amsterdam
- Where to enjoy a drink in Amsterdam as a solo traveller
- Relax and recuperate at Sauna Deco
10 Things To Do Alone in Amsterdam
1. Go on a walking tour
Image credit: musement.com
The winding streets, whilst beautiful, can be hard to navigate to those on their first solo trip to Amsterdam. To help you get your bearings, we recommend that you attend one of Amsterdam’s free* walking tours.
Walking tours are a great way to meet new people, whilst learning about Amsterdam’s tales, history and hidden secrets. Typically, Amsterdam’s walking tours visit Anne Frank’s house, The Jewish Quarter, Dutch East India Company headquarters, canals, locks, and hidden churches.
*Whilst these walking tours are free, attendees are encouraged to pay a small fee to tour guides.
Clink recommends: meet at the ClinkNOORD reception daily at 10.25am for a free walking tour right from our hostel. Simply look for the red umbrella!
2. Visit the museums of Amsterdam
Image credit: Museum Ons’ Lieve Heer op Solder
If visiting one of Amsterdam’s array of museums isn’t on your list of things to do alone in Amsterdam, then we’re here to convince you otherwise.
Anne Frank House
Visiting Anne Frank’s former home is one of the most moving experiences in Amsterdam, and going it alone is one of the best ways to really connect with the atmosphere in the museum. The audio tour, which vividly explains each room in detail, allows visitors to learn how Anne Frank and her family spent their final years in Amsterdam.
If you have just one museum in mind on your list of things to do alone in Amsterdam, then let it be this one.
Cost: from €10.50 – you must book online for a specific time slot. Book your tickets here.
Museum Ons’ Lieve Heer op Solder
A.K.A the church in the attic. Hidden in the heart of Amsterdam’s city centre lies a rare, well preserved canal house with a secret: a complete catholic church in the attic. The church was built by Catholic merchant Jon Hartman, who lived there with his family during the period that Catholic celebrations were strictly prohibited.
Cost: €12.50. Book tickets here.
Van Gogh Museum
The Van Gogh museum, whilst largely popular, is a quiet place for visitors to marvel at the artist’s life works, and discover the often troubled years he suffered due to illness. For a more relaxed experience, visit the museum in the morning as it’s usually less crowded.
Cost: €19.00. Book tickets here.
3. Take a trip to IJ-Hallen
Image credit: IJ-Hallen
Crowned Europe’s biggest flea market, IJ-Hallen is a hidden gem for travellers alike – because what’s better than a little retail therapy when travelling alone in Amsterdam?
With two grand halls jam-packed with vintage clothes, shoes, antiques (and anything else you can think of), IJ-Hallen is the perfect place to source a souvenir of your solo travel trip to Amsterdam, or a gift to bring back for a loved one.
However, the market only runs twice per month, so be sure to check whether it coincides with your travel dates by on their website.
4. Catch a film at Tuschinski
Image credit: iamexpat.com
Considered to be one of the most beautiful cinemas in the world, Tuschinski was commissioned by Abraham Icek Tuschinski in 1921 to give Amsterdammers a place to watch the latest performances in serious style.
Today, the main auditorium hosts many premieres of Dutch films and shows the best films available in cinemas. But if you don’t get a chance to catch a film, we recommend you take a look around the feature to marvel at the incredible architecture.
5. Visit Brouwerij ‘t IJ
Image credit: afar.com
If the Heineken tour isn’t quite your thing, we recommend that you add Brouwerij ‘t IJ on to your list of things to do alone in Amsterdam instead.
This small Amsterdam brewery is housed in the former Funen bathhouse, just next to the De Gooyer windmill, and offers brewery tours to a maximum of 20 people in both Dutch and English every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. These smaller tours are perfect for solo travellers in Amsterdam to meet other tourists in a more intimate setting.
Plus, it’s much cheaper than more commercialised brewery tours at just €6.50 per person, including 1 beer each. It’s a win-win!
Clink recommends: arrive at Brouwerij ‘t IJ’s bar to register on the day early, as spaces can be filled fast.
6. Take a stroll around Vondelpark
Image credit: melknowswheretogo.nl
We know that it can be easy to feel overwhelmed in a city whilst travelling alone, paired with the eagerness to cram everything in over a short period of time. We recommend that you allow an hour or two to take a stroll around Vondelpark to slow it down, gather your thoughts and take a moment to admire the park’s lakes, ponds and weeping willows.
Clink recommends: during the summer months, save on the costs of a cafe and take a picnic to enjoy
7. Visit one of Holland’s iconic tulip fields
Take a day trip out of the city centre to experience the incredible beauty of one of Holland’s iconic tulip fields – we promise that you will not regret it.
The tulip is one of the most enduring symbols of the Netherlands. Whether you visit in spring for the festival, or at another time in the year, there will always be an opportunity to discover more about the national flower of Holland.
Come spring, the fields are in full bloom and are a spectacular sight to behold. But if you’re visiting in the winter, don’t despair – there are special tours that take you behind the scenes of a tulip greenhouse where flowers are grown all year round!
Clink recommends: Holland’s tulip fields are an Instagrammers hotspot, so don’t be afraid to ask other tourists to take your photo – we’re sure that many would be happy to do so, if you return the favour!
Visiting Amsterdam in April? Take a look at our guide to Amsterdam’s Tulip Festival.
8. Where to eat alone in Amsterdam
Eating alone whilst on a solo trip to Amsterdam can be daunting, we get it. But once you have taken the plunge, we guarantee you’ll wish you’d have done it before. See, eating alone is liberating, empowering and allows you to be you.
Here are just a handful of places we’d recommend you grab a bite to eat on your solo trip to Amsterdam:
Instock is determined to reduce food wastage by turning food surplus from supermarkets and other producers into incredible dishes. With food collected daily, Instock’s chefs improvise with what is at hand to create tasty dishes.
The laid back atmosphere and open plan seating options offer solo travellers a place to eat that not only tastes good, but does good too.
Because cats make everything better. Period.
Kettencafe Kopjes, Amsterdam’s first and finest cat cafe offers a warm place to kick back, relax and enjoy lunch in the company of some of the cutest cats ever.
And we promise we’re not being biased.
ZincBAR’s solo traveller weekly dinner allows solo travellers to meet up, make friends and enjoy new experiences with likeminded people.
Clink recommends: bring a book or journal whilst waiting for your meal or just sit back and people watch
9. Where to enjoy a drink in Amsterdam as a solo traveller
Image credit: Amsterdam Roest
Amsterdam has its fair share of excellent watering holes. But knowing which to choose when travelling alone in Amsterdam can be a little tricky. So, whether you like the hustle and bustle of busy bars, or prefer to enjoy a tipple in a quiet corner with a book, here are a handful of bars we’d recommend you take a visit during your solo trip to Amsterdam.
If you’re looking to experience one of Amsterdam’s traditional, friendly ‘brown cafes’ then head to Cafe Hoppe. The space dates all the way back to 1670 when it was originally a jenever distillery and, since then, has been a gathering place for the city’s intellectuals – similar to the eighteenth century coffee shops of London.
Whilst there are many quiet corners for you to enjoy a drink in your own company, brown bars are filled with many chatty locals and tourists alike, so be sure to mingle with others at the bar.
Amsterdam Roest is arguably one of Amsterdam’s best bars. With a relaxed, industrial vibe, you can enjoy drinks outside in the summer on their ‘beach’, and dance the night away with one of their many warehouse parties and festivals.
With an array of markets, parties and events, Amsterdam Roest is the perfect place to visit alone, and leave with new friends.
If you’re really looking to treat yo’self, A’DAM Tower’s Madam bar and restaurant is the one for you. The bar offers breathtaking panoramic views across the city to enjoy whilst sipping on a cocktail (or two). But hold the cash, Madam only takes payment via card.
Clink recommends: after enjoying a drink, why not head to ZincBAR? Right on A’DAM tower’s doorstep, ZincBAR located in our hostel is packed with solo travellers and friendly groups of tourists!
10. Relax and recuperate at Sauna Deco
Image credit: Hello Amsterdam
Escape from the hustle and bustle of the big city near the end of your solo trip to Amsterdam and enjoy a few moments to yourself at Sauna Deco, located in the heart of the city.
Take a refreshing dip in the cold water plunge pool and feel your stresses melt away in the steam bath. Just an hour or two at Sauna Deco will make you feel relaxed, refreshed and ready to take on your journey home.
Cost: €25 (student rate: €20)
Opening hours: Mon-Sat: 12:00 – 23:00 (Sun: 13:00 – 19:00)
However, if you’re on a tight budget, we’ve got your back. Why not take part in one of our yoga classes? It is completely free, located in the Atrium every Thursday at 9am. Visit our event page for more information. Namaste.
Whether you visit each and every place on our list of things to do alone in Amsterdam, or handpick just a few, Amsterdam is the perfect place for solo travellers to soak up a city packed with history, an array of things to do and incredible people.
However, if you need to see a friendly face or need some advice during your solo trip to Amsterdam, please do not hesitate to visit us here at ClinkNOORD!